Today I went to Ramsgate for my friend DAVID Malin’s Funeral. I went down on the train with my friend Andy Caine, we got a cab to the Cemetery, always bitter sweet to see old friends under these circumstances, Nick and Moya Hogarth, Guy Pratt, Gareth Marks, Ray Tenent, Nicola from the Hogarth Musical and of course Susie Griffiths who spent decades as David partner and is the mother of their beautiful daughter Emma and of course David’s Mother Joan Le Mesurier.
An old friend of David and his sister gave very moving speeches in the chapel and some of David’s music was played, there was a huge black butterfly at the top of the gothic window frame throughout.
Then we went to the graveside and were asked to think about what David had meant to us, for me it was how special he made me feel and how much he helped me when we were recording and just having the opportunity to record some of his songs, which are incredible.
We were invited to throw earth on the coffin which I did.
Then to the yacht club for the wake, lots of photos of David with family and friends. A procession of the hearse, horses, carriages and the band pictured here processed down the main road with Emma at the helm, we all watched from the yacht club balconies and cheered. When they stopped the band played for about 15 minutes.
Nick Hogarth had set up a PA system, the music started with a friend of David’s playing guitar and singing 3 songs. David and Nick wrote a fantastic musical on the life of William Hogarth so we started with me singing ‘suffer no more little children’ with Andy and Nicola on harmonies in the chorus, then Nicola sang ‘gin lane’ and ‘unspoken love’ beautifully. Then I sang AFTER THE RAIN an achingly beautiful song by David which I recorded in 1992, Nick made me a new backing track last week, it was so emotional to sing and I was terrified, I wanted to do the song justice and honour David’s memory, it meant a huge amount to David’s family. I’m happy to say I managed it, people cried and said they were very moved, Emma was very thankful, it’s her who asked me to perform it, she was a child at the time so it’s a shared memory being at their home and learning and recording the song. She also wrote one of the lines.
Then moving and funny speeches from Guy Pratt and Ray Tenent.
then off to the pub with Emma and Andy and others to meet up with other friends and dance to the band in the street and go to several pubs to have fun and remember David.
Andy and I left about 6, I got home at 9.30 exhausted but thankful to have been able to honour my friend.